Posted on July 30 2018
Welcome to our first blog post! Despite sputniks first birthday fast approaching and having personally been dealing in Vintage and Mid Century Modern items for over a decade I am ashamed to say this is my first ever blog post!
My personal obsession with all things Vintage and Mid Century originated at seventeen years old collecting vinyl records from all over the UK. This led to my first business sourcing, restoring and selling vintage record players from the 1950s to 1970s. During the following five years dealing in vintage audio my personal love for mid century furniture (particularly the iconic British brand G Plan) grew, and this led to a second business being formed, restoring and selling Mid Century furniture.
The idea of dealing in Mid century furniture started with my apartment being turned in to a kind of time warp, an ever changing array of 8 track tape players, swivel chairs and danish teak credenzas, much to the fascination of my friends. All of which was before the real mid century interior design influence hit the mainstream hard as Mad Men became a TV and cultural phenomenon in mid 2007.
As the years progressed I continued to collect and noticed the mid century influence becoming evermore prevalent and wondered if the world of vintage had tipped from cult into the mainstream. Things I was collecting and in some cases being given, were now becoming harder to find and costing considerably more. The high end Danish and designer pieces had always held their value but this was different, British and other European teak was growing in popularity. One night after discussing things with Chris, one of my best friends from college, who had the same interests in Mid Century design and vinyl records, we decided to embark upon a business. Not quite defining what we meant by 'business' resulted in a flexible approach and an interesting journey with lessons learned when it came to turning our interest in to a career.
Working locally we got our first warehouse and began sourcing and restoring mid century pieces. The next 5 years we gained skills and a network of dealers which gave us invaluable knowledge when it came to the trade and how to work within it. Sending our pieces all over Europe brought a satisfaction and experience over the following years that shaped my life and a future that would become Sputnik Furniture.
Last year while talking to another friend Martin at a wedding, I discussed what myself and Chris were doing and how we wound up doing it. An idea of sourcing in Europe for our own website in the USA instead of supplying other dealers was mentioned and seemed an interesting one. Martin had a keen interest in what myself and Chris had achieved with our limited means and wanted to get involved. Living in Massachusetts and with several successful businesses already under his belt Martin suggested partnering up and Sputnik was born.
Myself and Chris continue to source in the UK and Europe with Martin coming over to the UK several times a year to the warehouse (above) and we discuss and curate around 120 to 150 pieces per trip. With four trips completed so far things have been busy and for this reason I'm just getting around to writing our first blog post!
My aim with this blog is to be more than just a place to update people about the business itself (although it will do this!). It will hopefully show how sputnik fits in to a world in which I have seen mid century and vintage become mainstream terms whilst still having niche subgroups. From products, events and places to things I just think are relevant, whether it be small independent start ups to larger established businesses, there are things I find regularly which I will write about and hope people find interesting.